Posts By Madeleine Laing

LISTEN: Johnny and The Fembots

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johnny and the fembots

(photo by Thomas Oliver)

Johnny And The Fembots are an annoyingly talented group of youths from Brisbane, featuring members of Go Violets and Jeremy Neal’s live band. I knew I was gonna like them when they released their first single (a Christmas song) – the delightful  ‘(I Wish It Could Be) Christmas Forever’. Their second single ‘Hey, Don’t!’ Has the same breathy, effortless harmonies and naive 60’s pop aesthetics. Coming in at just over a minute, it’s a short and shiny gem of a song. The video to this track also features some swooning over 50c soap in a laundromat. It’s charming…check it out.

Keep up with Johnny and The Fembots while they do great things here.


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LISTEN: James X. Boyd – ‘James X. Boyd & The Boydoids’

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Brisbane can be shitty in a lot of ways: it’s hot all the time, there are a lot of racists, and it’s pretty ugly to look at. But every now and then a record like this comes out of our big country town, and goddamn it makes you proud.

A little while ago we brought you ‘Elissa Says’, the first single from James X. Boyd & The Boydoids self-titled debut album. Now you can wrap your ears around the whole thing in digital form, with a cassette due out before too long.

This is (with a couple of exceptions). an album of love songs. Love songs in which the word ‘c*nt-wits’ is used, but love songs all the same. It starts off gently with ‘Blue Apia’, a tropical paradise set to delicate, wistful strumming that recalls old Hawaiian records and apparently “the only place in the world you can still buy cans of new coke”.

‘New Town Tango’ and ‘Brunswick Street Junkies’ paint pictures of suburbs in very different lights, but Boyd seems to be fighting himself in both songs. The former starts out with that very pretty jangly guitar that is used to great effect all through this record, but builds to a more aggressive point near the end, Boyd seemingly unable to answer his own question when he asks “and do I need you back?”. In the latter he perfectly expresses the mix of sympathy and repulsion that junkies conjure, with a few instantly relatable lines.

The middle of the record reveals the emotional centre; three sweet, restrained ballads, the highlight of which is ‘Baby Green’, where Boyd plays a sage advisor. “Quit your job and we can see what the world’s like/ and I know there’s things stopping you/ and they, won’t let up/ but it’s not quite as hard as it may seem”.

There are a lot of beautiful things about this album. Boyd’s restraint and lightness of touch is striking, along with the band’s ability to communicate lyrics that are both immediately endearing and honest. My favourite track is ‘For What You’re Worth’, which reveals a more cynical side of the band. During the chorus the music cuts out, leaving Boyd to throw a question into the ether, before the meandering guitar comes back in, leaving him again unanswered. The dark and dusty ‘Diamond On Your Own’ and soft, lilting single ‘Elissa Says’ close out the record. But if you’re anything like me, you’ll be putting it straight back on before the last note even ends.


Support these guys by purchasing the full album here.


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LISTEN: The Living Eyes

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The Living Eyes

The Living Eyes are a super rad band from Geelong, who, if you can’t tell from the Bee Gees reference, are unduly committed to their throwbacks (never a bad thing). Their tracks wink at nostalgia. while being too cheekily raucous to get weighed down by it. These guys are definitely worth getting to know.

Their rad previous 7″ Ways To Make A Living came out last year and the guys managed to snag a gold spot on arguably the one of the best releases of 2012 (if compilation CDs count).

On April 1st (no foolin’), the band are releasing their debut self-titled LP recorded by Mikey Young, and they’re doing a pretty extensive tour around the East Coast to launch it (full dates below).

The two tracks below are worth your ears: ‘Slave Labour’ – a fast and cranky working-dudes anthem and ‘Up And At Them’; a fleshed-out, scuzzy workout but with the same defiant stomping ‘tude.


LP Tour Dates:

Fri April 5th – FBi Social Club, Sydney w/Gooch Palms, East River + Family
Sat April 6th – The Oxford Art Factory, Sydney w/ The Otchkies + The Nugs
Sun April 7th – Hollywood Hotel, Sydney
Sat April 20th –  Black Bear Lodge, Brisbane w/Tiny Migrants, Cobwebbs + Sewers (FREE ENTRY)
Sun April 21st – Mustang Bar Rock’n’Roll BBQ Brisbane w/The Sulphur Lights + Midnight Woolf (FREE ENTRY)
Fri April 26th – Grace Darling Basement, Melbourne w/ The Bonninelis + The Clits
SAT April 27th –  The Baron Club, Geelong w/ The Kremlings


‘Slave Labour’

‘Up and At Them’

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LISTEN: Tiny Migrants – ‘Uncontrolable’

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‘Uncontrolable’ (too wild even for conventional spelling) is the latest track from Brisbane’s Tiny Migrants.

We’ve been on the trail these guys have left ever since they played our Brissie Halloween party in 2010.

This track doesn’t waste one second of its 2:12 running time, starting out with a blazing beat from Tiger Beams’ Jesse Hawkins, picking up some tambourine and a dusty bass line before Julien James’s spazzy guitar and vocal yelps complete a volatile experiment in damn exciting R ‘n’ R.

This track is the sound of going a little too far and taking a little too much. Jacinta Walker’s backing vocals are almost taunts, daring the listener to follow the band into the hole they’re gleefully throwing themselves into.

‘Uncontrolable’ follows on from Tiny Migrants’ killer single from early 2012, the slightly poppier ‘Fishpond Goldmine’ and their standout contribution to this year’s Nuggets covers compilation, ‘A Public Execution‘. With more releases due out in 2013, keep your eyes open and your ears pricked for Tiny Migrants, ‘cause they’re coming for you.

Pick this awesome track up for a buck on Bandcamp.


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LISTEN: James X. Boyd – ‘Elissa Says’

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On his first EP, Brisbane’s James X. Boyd tapped a vein of strikingly personal and deeply beautiful song writing. With a new record coming out this year, his first single ‘Elissa Says’ shows that there’s plenty more of this gold to come.

The track is marked by a combination of Boyd’s pretence-free vocals and completely plaintive lyrics. There’s a simple sweetness to this track that’s immediately nostalgic, but most of all – it’s honest.



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LISTEN: Cannon / Lovely Legs Split Tape – ‘Meatboys’

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Country and punk have always gone together like vodka and orange juice: never classy, but a cheap way to have a fucking great time. Brisbane’s Lovely Legs deliver this deadly combo with rare spite and snarl, and they’ve teamed up with local dirty garage punks Cannon to give us a split cassette of fantastic angry songs about shitty people and self-loathing (well, from the couple of lyrics I can understand). Lovely Legs’ side is all cracked out and accusatory; the way Alex Dunlop half screams, half drawls on ‘I Ain’t Goin’ To Waste’ is downright threatening. ‘Dumb’ is the standout track, with its stomping bass line and messy, shrieking guitar while the drums crash right through your brain and Dunlop sings – “all I touch turns to shit/ I don’t mind when I’m lyin’ in it”.

Cannon’s side is a reissue of their Blerndaddy EP from earlier in the year, but their blunt, guileless tracks are still the most charming kind of atrocious noise out there. If you like music with a little more spit than shine, chances are you’ll dig the hell out of this.

Buy the tape from the Long Gone Records website. If tapes ain’t your thing, you can listen and download Lovely Legs’ side here and Cannon’s side here.




Facebook: Lovely Legs / Cannon

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WATCH: Teen Sensations – ‘Get Fit For Summer’

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YouTube Preview Image

As much as the pale, coat loving folks among us may try and deny it, the fact is – it is really goddamn hot. Good things can still come out of the sweaty season, and one of those is this super sweet surf tune from the Teen Sensations.  Ever wondered with a bunch of mid-twenties dudes pretending to be teenagers pretending to be The Beach Boys would look like? Look no further.

The video has the boys escaping from a boogie boarding ‘Dean’ and generally being hooligan youths ala. Today Tonight. It’s funny as hell and this track is tops.

You can also download the track for free on the Teen Sensations’ Unearthed page.

If you wanna follow their ongoing war with ‘The Dean’, and get plenty of life/ fitness tips, like the guys on Facebook.

(ps. Don’t Google ‘Teen Sensations’ at work.)



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